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Big Rumor about Kelley Racing/Greg Ray

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  • Big Rumor about Kelley Racing/Greg Ray

    I received a phone call today from a friend, and reputable source, that says the word bouncing around IMS is that Greg Ray will be let go from Kelley Racing before the Test in the West. The story is that Ray's funding has fallen through, and Kelley does not want to fund Ray out of his own pocket.

    Like I said this is only a rumor at this point, but if IMS knows about it...

  • #2
    Funding as in Kelley's or did Ray bring some of his own?
    IRL, Champcar and F1 fan

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    • #3
      This would not surprise me. The whole one car thing got fixed real quick. Too quick.

      I think IMS told Kelly he would have a second can even if they needed to help. That way IMS would put a driver in the car that was good for the seires or lost a ride (e.g. Fisher, Unser Jr.).

      Kelly however was able to land a deal on his own with Ray.

      If this does happen I think I know where Unser will be racing next season.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Mista Bone:
        <STRONG>This would not surprise me. The whole one car thing got fixed real quick. Too quick.

        I think IMS told Kelly he would have a second can even if they needed to help. That way IMS would put a driver in the car that was good for the seires or lost a ride (e.g. Fisher, Unser Jr.).

        Kelly however was able to land a deal on his own with Ray.

        If this does happen I think I know where Unser will be racing next season.</STRONG>
        Fine by me...
        "It was actually fun, because you're back fully driving again in these trucks. Ninety percent of the tracks we go to in the IRL, you're flat-out. I was having to lift off the corners some here." - Buddy Rice

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        • #5
          Well I don't know about whether Kelley has dropped Ray or not, but I doubt it would have anything to do with funding.

          Ray's personal backing comes from EDS Corp. and he made a PR appearance at their Dallas-Ft. Worth office last last week.

          And because of that backing any contract between Kelley and Ray would not be trivial to buy out.

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          • #6
            Outside of the EDS $$ that has followed Ray for years, I am not aware of any personal sponsorship which Ray brought to Kelley. Doesn't mean it doesn't happen -- just means I have heard about it.
            "If TF members were given solid gold cars, some would complain about the color." - stnkypete

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            • #7
              This is ridculous if it happens. If one of the IRL's most prominient teams can't run things better than this, we have problems.

              He signed Ray, now stick with it.
              All Roads Lead to Indy...

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              • #8
                If this rumor turns out to be true, I'll ask the question again: Why do IRL teams make announcments/press releases before they count all of their chickens? Another public embarrasment for the league if true (I hope it's not true). Can you imagine McLaren announcing their funding fell thru to run Kimi?
                "You make one **** of a caucasian Jackie." The Dude Lebowski

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                • #9
                  "one of the IRL's most prominient teams"

                  Its a "prominient team" in the IRL only because there have been so few properly funded teams. Tom Kelley strikes me as a guy who wants to be like RP, but I don't think he will come close. I doubt that Kelley will be a "prominent team" in 3 or 4 years once the serious cart operations move over.

                  Having said that, everyone makes mistakes. If he realized Ray was a mistake and is going to jetison him before he does any more damage, I can't fault him for that.

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                  • #10
                    Rev-ed:

                    The EDS money IS Ray's personal backing. And it's only been around since late '98.

                    As for contracts falling through:
                    1.) Jos Verstappen was signed by Arrows in the summer of 2001 for the next couple years - but all signs point to him not racing there.
                    2.) Bryan Herta was re-signed for 2002 for a 3rd Forsythe CART car - but that contract evidently got bought out.
                    3.) Buddy Rice was signed to an F3000 test contract but never drove after the 1st seasonal open test.
                    4.) Scott Sharp got signed to a 3 year PacWest contract in 1994 but Mo Gugelmin/Hollywood bought out the contract.


                    I could go on and on...

                    Folks...it it is a reality that:
                    a.) All contacts are either conditional or can be bought out
                    b.) The likelihood of either happening increases in a climate of increased economic uncertainty.

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                    • #11
                      >once the serious cart operations take over...

                      LOL!!! And given the abysmal (truly) ROI CART is offering that sponsor base, how many of those do you think will be left?

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                      • #12
                        Missile has good contacts
                        SENسR MODERATOR......

                        "Better To Be Judged By Twelve Than Carried By Six"
                        " Only Those Who Will Risk Going Too Far....Can Possibly Find Out How Far One Can Go "...T.S. Elliot....

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by IndyRob:
                          <STRONG>If one of the IRL's most prominient teams can't run things better than this, we have problems.</STRONG>
                          We have problems regardless of what Greg Ray or Tom Kelley do. Where have you been?
                          "The problem with internet quotes and statistics is that often times, they're wrongfully believed to be real." - Abraham Lincoln

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                          • #14
                            This is really interesting. My thoughts at the time of the announcement was if Ray had the sponsor, why not announce it? EDS has never appeared as a major sponsor on any of his cars he has driven. Look at the Menards cars of the last couple of years. Where is the EDS logo on the car? It isn't even on the die-cast nor does it appear on the Menard 8x10 handouts so how much funding can it represent?

                            I think Kelley took a gamble and it's looking like it may not be panning out. It's very unfortunate, IF THIS IS TRUE. I do think that Kelley not making any major sponsorship announcement to date speaks volumes. Seems Ray can't pull in any more money than Dismore. So why axe Mark? At least he could bring the car in in one piece and he had the Bryant money behind him although Kelley signed the sponsorship to the team.

                            I have seen more positive posts in favor of Mark on this forum than for Greg. That should be an indicator of some sort for who may havemore sponsorship opportunities after all.
                            Have attended: Indy 500 (36), Belle Island (3), Kentucky (4), St Pete (3), Homestead (1), Texas (2) Michigan (5), Cleveland (3), Iowa (6), Chicagoland (5), IRP (2), Eldora (3)...

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                            • #15
                              "Kick em when their up, kick when their down, kick em the spin--kick em all around".
                              --Don Henley--

                              Let's undermine the IRL because of a rumor. No trolling now...

                              [ January 14, 2002: Message edited by: Bravo1 ]

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